E-Cigarettes

E-cigarettes are now the most commonly used tobacco product among Montana’s youth.

Although fewer youth are smoking cigarettes, the tobacco industry continues to create and market products that offer new ways to deliver nicotine and hook lifelong customers. Several of the largest tobacco companies, such as Lorillard, R.J. Reynolds and Altria, have either acquired e-cigarette companies or are marketing their own electronic cigarettes.

As e-cigarette sales have risen, product costs have dropped, making e-cigarettes increasingly affordable8 – a factor that makes these products appealing to youth, who tend to be particularly price-sensitive.Almost half of Montana high school students have tried e-cigarettes and 23% are using them regularly.1

E-Cigarette Basics

  • Also called “e-cigs,” “mods,” “e-hookahs,” “vape pens,” and “tank systems.” 3
  • Devices that heat a liquid into an aerosol, also called vapor, that the user inhales.
  • They come in many shapes and sizes. Many are designed to look just like regular cigarettes.
  • The liquid and aerosol can be made up of nicotine, flavorings, ultrafine particles, heavy metals, and chemicals that have been known to cause cancer.3

E-cigarette use poses a significant and avoidable health risk to young people.

Nicotine affects brain development, which continues to age 25.

Most e-cigarettes contain nicotine, a very addictive substance. Nicotine, no matter how it’s delivered, is unsafe for youth and young adults because it can harm their developing brains.

Young people are more likely to take risks when it comes to their health and safety because the portion of their brain responsible for decision making and impulse control is not fully developed.

Nicotine addiction, mood disorders, and permanent lowering of impulse control are all risks of using nicotine products during adolescence.

Nicotine also changes the way new memories are created or skills are learned.2

Not only can nicotine harm the parts of the brain that control attention and learning, but since young people’s brains build these connections faster than adult brains, addiction happens more easily for young people than adults. Big Tobacco is targeting youth to create life-long customers.

E-cigarette use among youth and young adults is strongly linked to the use of other tobacco products.

There is no evidence to support the claim that using e-cigarettes “protects” young people from using cigarettes.2 In fact, research shows that non-smoking youth who use e-cigarettes are 4 times more likely to try conventional cigarettes than the non-smoking youth who do not use e-cigarettes.6

E-cigarette aerosol is not harmless.

The aerosol, often called vape or vapor, can contain harmful and potentially harmful chemicals including:

  • Nicotine: ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs
  • Diacetyl: a flavoring chemical linked to a serious lung disease
  • Benzene: a volatile organic compound found in car exhaust
  • Nickel, tin, and lead: heavy metals

Scientists are still working to understand the health effects and harmful doses of e-cigarette contents when they are heated and turned into an aerosol for both the user and those exposed to the aerosol secondhand.

E-cigarettes can explode and cause fires.

E-cigarettes contain lithium batteries that have been known to explode. Some of these explosions have caused serious, preventable injuries.

Did you know:

  • E-cigarettes are being marketed using the same tactics Big Tobacco used to get kids to start smoking regular cigarettes.
  • No e-cigarette product has been approved by the FDA as a quit aid.
  • E-cigarettes can be found in over 7,700 flavors targeted at youth, like cotton candy, root beer float and bubblegum5 – flavors that federal law prohibits in conventional cigarettes.11
  • E-cigarettes and refill cartridges are advertised on radio and TV, and in magazines.10
  • The good news – as of August 2016, Montana retailers are prohibited from selling e-cigarettes to anyone under the age of 18.

Take Action

Action can be taken at the national, state, local, tribal and territorial levels to address e-cigarette use among youth and young adults. Actions could include:

    • Incorporating e-cigarettes into smokefree policies
    • Increase the price by applying a tax
    • Regulating e-cigarette marketing that is likely to attract youth

Parents, teachers, health care providers, and others who influence youth and young adults can:

    • Advise and inform them of the dangers of nicotine
    • Discourage youth tobacco use in any form, including e-cigarettes
    • Set a positive example by being tobacco-free themselves.

Learn about the dangers of e-cigarettes, local and national tobacco use trends, and how tobacco companies are targeting kids to become lifelong users in this video.

Watch Our TV Ad:

To learn more about the dangers of e-cigarettes, click the image below:

 

Sources

  1. Montana Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 2017
  2. S. Department of Health and Human Services. E-cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A report of the Surgeon General. https://e-cigarettes.surgeongeneral.gov/documents/2016_SGR_Full_Report_non-508.pdf. Accessed December, 2016.
  3. Goniewicz LM, Knysak J, Gawron M, et. al. Levels of selected carcinogens and toxicants in vapour products from electronic cigarettes. Tobacco Control 2014, 23(2): 133-139.
  4. England, L, et. al. Nicotine and the developing human: A neglected element of the e-cigarette debate. Am J Prev Med 2015.
  5. American Lung Association. Myths and Facts about E-cigarettes. http://www.lung.org/stop-smoking/smoking-facts/myths-and-facts-about-e-cigs.html. Accessed December, 2016.
  6. Miech, R., Patrick, M. E., Omalley, P. M., & Johnston, L. D. (2017). E-cigarette use as a predictor of cigarette smoking: results from a 1-year follow-up of a national sample of 12th grade students. Tobacco Control. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2016-053291
  7. Lorillard Inc. Acquires Blu Ecigs, CSP Daily News, Apr. 25, 2012, http://www.cspnet.com/category-management-news-data/tobacco-news-data/articles/lorillard-acquires-blu-ecigs; Richard Craver, Reynolds Developing New Smokeless Products, Winston-Salem J., July 29, 2012, http://www.journalnow.com/business/article_cf223198-c21f-5b4e-8e7b-c5fb6190dcad.html; Shan Li, Marlboro Maker Altria to Sell E-Cigarettes, L.A. Times, June 11, 2013, http://articles.latimes.com/2013/jun/11/business/la-fi-mo-altria-electronic-cigarette-20130611; Simon Akam, Big Tobacco Fights Back: How the Cigarette Kings Bought the Vaping Industry, Newsweek Europe, May 27, 2015, http://europe.newsweek.com/big-tobacco-fights-back-how-cigarettekings-bought-vaping-industry-327758; Edith Hancock and Erin Brodwin, One of the World’s Largest Tobacco Companies has Launched an Electric Cigarette That Might Be Just as Bad for You as a Normal One, Business Insider, November 30, 2016, http://www.businessinsider.com/philip-morris-e-cigarette-2016-11; Jonathan Adler, Why The FDA’s New E-Cigarette Regulations are a Gift to Big Tobacco (and Could Actually Harm Public Health), The Washington Post, May 5, 2016, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2016/05/05/why-the-fdas-new-e-cigarette-regulations-are-a-gift-to-big-tobacco-and-could-actually-harmpublic-health/?utm_term=.7da56936a5dc.
  8. See, e.g., NBC Health News, FDA Limits E-Cigarettes, Cigars (2016), http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/ fda-proposes-limits-e-cigarettes-cigars-chewing-tobacco-n568601 (“Vaping has taken off in a big way, with sales hitting an estimated $3.5 billion. An e-cigarette product ranges from $10 to $120, depending on how many charges it provides.”); Richard Craver, Electronic Cigarettes Gaining on Traditional Products, Winston-Salem J., Dec. 14, 2012, http:// www.journalnow.com/business/business_news/local/article_41fa04d6-4655-11e2-95d9-0019bb30f31a.html (“Refill cartridges can be purchased in different sizes and flavors; five-packs typically cost between $9 and $18. By comparison, a carton of cigarettes can cost between $25 and $50 for most name brands.”). But see Alex Liber et al, Tobacco Control, Combustible Cigarettes Cost Less to Use Than E-Cigarettes: Global Evidence and Tax Policy Implications (2016), http://tobaccocontrol.bmj.com/content/early/2016/03/16/ tobaccocontrol-2015-052874.short?source=acsh.org (where American Cancer Society researchers found that on average, the price of a pack of combustible tobacco cigarettes was just over half the price of a disposable e-cigarette ($5.00 and $8.50, respectively). They also found that while the liquid nicotine used to refill e-cigarettes can cost a couple of dollars less than a pack of regular cigarettes, the minimum price to purchase a rechargeable e-cigarette to use this liquid nicotine is more than $20. The rechargeable e-cigarettes preferred by most daily e-cigarette users cost even more. Comparable units of combustible cigarettes cost less than disposable e-cigarettes in almost every country in the sample. While the e-liquids consumed in rechargeable e-cigarettes might cost less per comparable unit than combustible cigarettes, the initial cost to purchase a rechargeable e-cigarette presents a significant cost barrier to switching from January 2017 www.publichealthlawcenter.org Regulating Electronic Cigarettes & Similar Devices p_20 smoking to vaping. Combustible tobacco cigarettes cost less to purchase than equivalent amounts of electronic cigarettes in 44 of 45 countries sampled around the world).
  9. U. S. Dep’t of Health & Human Servs., Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon General 522-29 (2012), http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/reports/preventing-youth-tobacco-use/ full-report.pdf; Frank Chaloupka et al., The Impact of Price and Tobacco Control Policies On the Demand For Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, 23 Suppl. 3 Tobacco Control Journal, iii41-47 (2014), http://tobaccocontrol.bmj.com/content/23/ suppl_3/iii41.full%3Futm_source%3Drss%26utm_medium%3Drss%26utm_campaign%3Dthe-impact-of-priceand-tobacco-control-policies-on-the-demand-for-electronic-nicotine-delivery-systems-free-full-text.
  10. Anna Edney, E-Cigarette Marketing Seen Threatened by FDA Scrutiny, Bloomberg, Oct. 16, 2013, http://www.bloomberg. com/news/print/2013-10-16/e-cigarette-marketing-seenthreatened-by-fda-scrutiny.html; Menfil Orellan-Barrios et al., Electronic Cigarettes in the Media, 29 (3) Baylor University Medical Center Proceedings 280-83 (2016), https:// www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4900769/#B15
  11. Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, Pub. L. No. 111-31 § 102, 123 Stat. 1776 (codified as amended in scattered sections of 5 U.S.C., 15 U.S.C. and 21 U.S.C. (2009)). Available at https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW- 111publ31/pdf/PLAW-111publ31.pdf, p. 25